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The 49ers Get Their Nickel Back

Mar 15, 2023 at 7:00 PM--


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The San Francisco 49ers signed cornerback Isaiah Oliver to a two-year deal. The team lost Jimmie Ward in free agency to the Houston Texans. Though the 49ers have second-year cornerback Samuel Womack III on the roster, they decided to address the slot corner position in free agency.

The Atlanta Falcons drafted Oliver in the second round of the 2018 NFL Draft with the 58th overall selection. He finished the 2022 season with 39 tackles, one sack, ten defensive stops, five pass breakups, and an interception. That interception came against the 49ers in his first game back from injured reserve.

Per Pro Football Focus, Oliver completed the 2022 season with a career-high 77.9 overall grade and a career-high 81.5 run-defense grade. Oliver was targeted 38 times in coverage and allowed 27 receptions (68.4 REC%). His most interesting statistic of 2022 was his zero penalties earned.

Can Oliver be the ball-hawking, tackling machine that Ward was at the nickel back position? Only time will tell, but the 49ers can pencil in Oliver as their starting nickel back once camp begins. Expect to see the progression from Womack, and expect the 49ers to draft a corner in the upcoming 2023 NFL Draft.
  • Written by:
    Wayne Breezie is a 49ers content creator. He had his first guest appearance on Ronbosports in 2012. He began writing for a Facebook group called the League of the 49ers. Next, he began writing for Nothing But Niners in 2017. In 2018, Wayne Breezie made his debut on YouTube’s Nothing But Niners show. In 2019, he started his podcast called Nitty Gritty Niners. After putting the pen down for several years, Breezie saw an opportunity to write for 49erscap.com. His first published article was in January of 2022 with 49ersCap, and he currently writes and produces weekly podcasts.
The opinions within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.



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